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(Updated) Letang Game-Time, Paired With Dumoulin; Kapanen Skates



Pittsburgh Penguins' Kris Letang
Kris Letang

Kris Letang, recovering from a lower-body injury, took line rushes with an old friend Tuesday at the Pittsburgh Penguins morning skate at PPG Paints Arena. That would be Brian Dumoulin, his long-time defense partner.

Will we see them play together Tuesday night when the Florida Panthers visit? It’s possible, considering that Penguins coach Mike Sullivan labeled Letang a game-time decision. Letang himself said he still needed to consult with the medical staff. It would seem to depend on how he feels over the course of the day. If he doesn’t dress Tuesday, he certainly seems close to returning.

Letang and Dumoulin were split up earlier this season, but there certainly would be a familiarity there if they were reunited.

“It’s good to have him back out there,” Dumoulin said after the morning skate. “Anytime we can have him back in our lineup, it makes us a better team. I’m excited to, hopefully, have him in the locker room, out there (for) warmups, hopefully playing.

“He’s such an important piece to this team. It’s missing a piece of us when he’s gone.”

Penguins captain Sidney Crosby agreed.

“It would be great. Whenever he’s ready – that’s the most important thing. It’s great to have him out there with us. It would be great to get him back, whenever that is,” Crosby said.

“Our (defensemen) have done a pretty good job in his absence. It’s not easy. Guys have been thrown into different roles, and they’ve handled it pretty well.”

Then, in a further sign that things are upbeat, Crosby threw a little lighthearted shade at his longtime teammate.

“Tough job being a defenseman,” Crosby said, then grinned. “I would never tell (Letang) that, but it is.”

Also at the morning skate, Letang started off practicing with the second power-play unit, then moved to his normal spot quarterbacking the top unit.

He has been out since getting hurt Dec. 28.

Tristan Jarry is expected to start in goal against the Panthers.

With a day off Monday, the team held a full morning skate rather than the optional it often holds. The only missing players were injured defenseman Jan Rutta and injured winger Kasperi Kapanen. Injured forward Josh Archibald participated in the morning skate in full-contact capacity but won’t play tonight, Sullivan said.

Kapanen, who is out on a week to week basis because of an undisclosed upper-body injury, skated with assistant coach Ty Hennes before the skate.

The lines and pairings:

Jake Guentzel-Sidney Crosby-Bryan Rust

Jason Zucker-Evgeni Malkin-Rickard Rakell

Brock McGinn-Teddy Blueger-Jeff Carter

Drew O’Connor-Ryan Poehling-Danton Heinen

(Jonathan Gruden-Josh Archibald)

Kris Letang-Brian Dumoulin

Marcus Pettersson-Jeff Petry

P.O Joseph-Chad Ruhwedel

Ty Smith-Mark Friedman




Shelly is a columnist and reporter for Pittsburgh Hockey Now. She was a Penguins beat writer for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and remains a contributor to The Hockey News. Catch her on Twitter @_shellyanderson

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Chase Cranson
Chase Cranson
7 days ago

Kappy should skate down to WBS

Ujn Hunter
7 days ago

I thought something happened to PHN as “(UPDATED) Letang on the Ice; Jarry Rejoins Practice (” is the last article that shows up on the homepage for me when going direct to “” but after looking at your Twitter feed it appears you’ve been going ever since… not sure why the homepage is stuck in a time warp for me or how to see the latest articles. Glad to know you’re all still alive.

Dan Kingerski
7 days ago
Reply to  Ujn Hunter

clear your cache.

7 days ago
Reply to  Dan Kingerski

That’s just a temporary solution, unless he clears his cache every time before accessing the site.